The field of international legal history finds itself at a crossroads. After some decades, the tone of the literature on the “turn to history” has turned from celebration to self-critique.  Indeed, the last couple of years have witnessed increased calls to pursue new directions, departing from the “well-worn paths” initially explored in the literature.  In this vein, some urge for a localized approach to the study of “legal politics,” while others push for a “history of international law in the vernacular,” a “grassroots analysis,” or a “radical historical critique.” Moreover, the “marked absences” of class, gender, and race from the traditional canon of the discipline seem like an increasingly inexcusable exclusion. In sum, the stage is set for a profound reconsideration of the aims, methodologies, and archives of contemporary international legal history.

Part of the “New Directions in the Theory & History of International Law” series, this workshop will be dedicated to the theme of “The Province of International Law: Space, Time, and Representation in International Legal History.” In the context of the workshop, a diverse group of scholars will reflect on how time, space, and place are represented in international legal history. As such, the papers discussed in the workshop seek to strike exciting conversations between the field of international law and recent developments in the studies of temporality and spatiality.

Alongside three thematic panels and a concluding roundtable, Luis Eslava (Kent Law School & La Trobe University) will give an opening keynote lecture entitled “The Political Economy of Representation: Counter-archiving and International Legal History.”

30 May 2024
2:40 pm

Maison de la Paix Geneve

Link to the conference